Embrace each other, clerics urge Kenyans

Salvation Army Kenya East Chief Secretary Friday Ayanam (left). Right, Lieutenant Colonel Gloria Ayanam. [Jonah Onyango, Standard]

The Salvation Army Kenya has called on Kenyans to remain united even as the country heads into Tuesday's elections. 

Clerics from the church, led by Salvation Army Kenya East Chief Secretary Friday Ayanam, also called on politicians to preach peace and cohesion among Kenyans.

Lieutenant Colonel Ayanam who was accompanied by Territorial Secretary for Women's Ministries, Lieutenant Colonel Gloria Ayanam, said the church is doing its best to bring people together and ensure peace before, during, and after the highly anticipated elections.

"The church is the only institution that brings together people from all walks of life and acts as the conscience of the nation. The church is still both a peacemaker and a moral authority," Friday said.

He added: "As a church, we remain committed to peace. We want the country to remain peaceful even after the elections, regardless of who wins. Elections are not a matter of life and death."

Friday noted that the country has been divided along tribal lines before, calling on Kenyans not to allow the same to happen again. "To all Kenyans, please don't allow politicians to divide you along tribal or party lines. No one should accept to be used to cause violence. We must also be ready to accept the outcome of the elections."

He added: "There must be winners and losers in any competition. So as we prepare our victory speeches, let us also prepare speeches we will read out if we lose. Let us always remember that there is another time." 

The Salvation Army is a protestant church and an international charitable organisation headquartered in London, England. The organisation reports a worldwide membership of over 1.7 million, comprising soldiers, officers, and adherents collectively known as Salvationists.

The 2022 General Election has four presidential candidates. United Democratic Alliance candidate William Ruto and his Azimio La Umoja One Kenya counterpart Raila Odinga are the frontrunners. Other candidates are David Mwaure of Agano Party and Roots Party presidential candidate George Wajackoyah.